Badam Halwa – easy, failproof recipe in a pressure cooker!

October 23, 2022 (Last Updated: October 26, 2022)

Of all the sweets I have ever made, I am most confident of this. It is what I make when I am making something for a festival, for a party or even to take to someone’s home. My method is quite an old school – using soaked and peeled almonds but the technique of how it is cooked makes all the difference. I use a pressure cooker for my badam halwa!

Don’t be intimidated yet, I know badam halwa is already an easy recipe. But, this makes it fail-proof. Since the sugar is cooked to consistency and almonds typically require NO cooking – it comes together in minutes too.

In this post, I will share two versions. First I will write on how to make badam halwa the usual way in a pan and later, I share notes on how to use a pressure cooker for it. The reason I am sharing both is that it really depends on your style of cooking if you have a pressure cooker if you are keen to use etc. But, really – I do both regularly and they are both amazing ways to make badam halwa. I usually soak and peel almonds to make badam halwa but storebought almond meal is an easy fix that makes it effortless!

Print Pin
5 from 1 vote

Badam Halwa

Learn to make a fool proof, delicious badam halwa both in an open pan and a pressure cooker! This is a simple recipe using only almonds, ghee, sugar, saffron and a little milk.
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes

Ingredients

To make Badam Halwa in an open pan

  • 250 grams almonds 1 cup peeled almonds
  • 150 grams sugar this measure is about 3/4 cup. It can be increased to 200 grams ( 1 cup)
  • 1 cup milk
  • ¾ cup ghee
  • saffron
  • ½ tsp cardamom

To make badam halwa in a pressure cooker

  • 250 grams almonds
  • 150 grams sugar this measure is about 3/4 cup. It can be increased to 200 grams ( 1 cup)
  • cup water
  • ¼ tbsp milk
  • ½ cup ghee can be increased by 1-2 tbsp if required.
  • saffron
  • ½ tsp cardamom

Instructions

Preparing Almonds and Saffron Milk

  • Soak almonds in warm water for 30 mins to 1 hour. Peel skin and grind adding milk by tablespoons to a  paste. It is easier if you run it dry to crumbs and then add milk to a paste. It need not be a fine paste, some coarseness is okay. It’s to be done in small batches.
    Note that for cooking in open pan, we can use more milk and make a slightly loose paste however for making in the pressure cooker – we only only less milk.
  • Soak saffron in ½ cup of warm milk (if following pressure cooker method, soak in 1/4 milk). A tip I’ve learnt is to toss the saffron in an empty iron pan to warm it and then add to milk. This helps to bring out flavour. An additional tip is to microwave the milk and saffron mixture in 30 second intervals.

To make Badam Halwa in an open pan

  • In a heavy bottomed pan, add the badam mixture, sugar, cardamom powder and stir in a low flame.
  • After 5-7 minutes, it will start foaming. Keep stirring in a low flame.
  • Then small bubbles will form, continue stirring in low flame for 3-5 more minutes and then add the saffron milk.
  • The colour will change to a golden yellow slowly. Keep stirring until all bubbles fully subside.
  • Now, start adding ghee in teaspoons. Make sure you add only one tsp a time and add the next one only after the previous one is absorbed. You will use upto ¾ cup of ghee in thus process, however depending on your preference you can reduce or increase this by ¼ cup.
  • Keep stirring until it thickens. Test for consistency ( this is my own idea, non scientific) – take a ghee greased spoon, dip into halwa and drop the halwa back, it has to fall off in one shot and not as a stream. At this stage, turn off and remove to a cooler vessel.
  • Once it reaches a thick paste like consistency, turn the flame off and remove off fire. Now use a spatula and bring the whole mixture together.
  • I prefer to mix it off heat until it cools down slightly. If you use less ghee, it will be sticky. If you use too much, it will be very glossy.
  • Let it cool in room temperature by closing the cooker with weight and just letting it cool.
  • Then,  make into pockets or serve as is. Badam halwa is best had at room temperature or slightly warmed in the microwave (10-20 seconds for 1 portion)

To make Badam Halwa in a pressure cooker

  • Soak, peel and grind almonds into a paste adding saffron soaked milk.
  • In a pressure cooker ( I used 3 L pressure pan), add 2 tbsp ghee and spread over the base. Add 250 grams sugar + ⅓  cup water. Keep on high for 6 whistles ( comes with 5 mins).
  • Turn off, release pressure immediately and  badam paste, cardamom and stir well. It will be a paste, and not yet an halwa. Make sure the badam paste is not very runny when using the cooker method. It has to be a thick paste.
  • Add ghee in batches, keep in the slowest flame and stir until it thickens into an halwa. I added about ¼ cup in each batch and stirred until the ghee is absorbed. Add next batch only after it is fully absorbed. Ensure it is fully on a low flame. The whole process takes only 6-7 minutes.
  • Test for consistency ( this is my own idea, non scientific) – take a ghee greased spoon, dip into halwa and drop the halwa back, it has to fall off in one shot and not as a stream. At this stage, turn off and keep cooker closed with weight for 5 minutes, open and serve.

Using Almond Meal instead of peeled almonds

  • If using almond meal, mix with saffron milk into a smooth paste and proceed as per the above recipe. The amount of almond meal required may be a little more than soaked almonds depending on the texture. But, in my experience it works out more or less in the same measure.
    The reason I personally prefer soaked and ground almonds is due to the coarseness a ground mixture adds. However, almond meal is an excellent substitute taste wise.

Notes

  • Saffron does not give the yellow colour typically seen in stores. Add a pinch of food colouring if you need that.
  • This is best done in a nonstick pan if doing the pan way. 
  • Cook fully only on a low flame. 
  • Do not compromise on ghee. It will turn out gummy and not so yummy. 
  • I find 1:1 sugar very sweet though most recipes online call for it. If you like the taste of almond in your halwa, I recommend reducing the sugar.

I like serving Badam Halwa as small toffees made with butter paper. When I made it for the first time in 2018, I did so for a Golu get together when we had other sweets as well. I felt most may not be able to eat badam halwa and decided to give it as a takeaway! However, almost everyone ate and also took away some pieces! It was a huge hit and everyone appreciated how convenient it is to serve, eat and take home. Since then, I take the time to do this, especially when making for us at home because it helps to store well in the fridge and of course, ensures portion control! Each toffee is roughly 1 tbsp of halwa, however, you can certainly add more.

The above measure makes about 27-30 toffees.

Small Batch Badam Halwa – ideal for a couple or a small family!

If you are a small family or only a couple, then you can make a small batch! I prefer this small batch badam halwa because it means I can make it more often. When doing a small batch, I prefer only using the pressure cooker.

Print Pin
5 from 1 vote

Badam Halwa in pressure cooker – small batch

Learn to make this 15 minutes, small batch badam halwa in the pressure cooker!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 3 minutes

Ingredients

  • 150 grams almonds
  • 100 grams sugar
  • ¼ cup + 1 tbsp ghee
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • ¼ cup water
  • saffron
  • ¼ tsp cardamom

Instructions

  • Soak almonds in hot boiling water for 20 – 30 minutes, peel and grind adding saffron milk to a thick paste. Note we are only adding less milk, so it will be a thick paste.
  • To a 2L pressure cooker, add sugar + 1 tbsp ghee + water and pressure cook for 6 whistles on medium flame. Takes about 5 minutes.
  • Release pressure immediately, add the almond mixture, and 2 tbsp ghee and stir in a low flame for 2 minutes.
  • Add ghee in tsp, stirring well after each addition. Ensure it’s fully on low flame.
  • In about 6-7 minutes, halwa is ready.
  • Keep cooker closed with weight for 5 minutes, open and serve.

Wish you all a wonderful, happy, and prosperous Diwali. Sharing a few of my previous year’s Diwali platters for you to view, enjoy, and get inspired!

If you are looking for easy, delicious Diwali sweets to make in an hour – check out this post I wrote last year!

Six Amazing sweets for Diwali!

Please leave a comment below if you made this recipe, have any questions or thoughts! Your comment will help me learn more about your preferences and will help other readers.

You Might Also Like

1 Comment

  • Reply
    Anandhi
    October 30, 2022 at 6:49 am

    5 stars
    Loved it, easy to prepare with 10 months baby. Couldn’t stop eating 🤤

  • Leave a Reply

    Recipe Rating